Ivy Tripp is a term that Katie Crutchfield, her band Waxahatchee, invented to describe the directionless feeling experienced by modern twenty somethings and her album of the same name is the soundtrack to that experience. Taut in execution and tender in sensibility, it’s an album of growth and reflection, this follow up to 2013’s Cerulean Salt indicating a maturity and jostling resilience. There’s a sense of potent authenticity to it, songs revealing a tightly packed vacuum of frustration as well as a vibrant and steadfast core. Guitars aggressively ride forward as the lyrics analyse experience, in this riotous album of spectacular discordance.
Featuring rhythmic opener Breathing, sweet and tender Air, the hypnotic State By Noon and rocky confidence of Poison, whirling guitars and pounding drums shimmer together throughout in a steely union. In fact the whole album, regardless of style and tempo, is brilliantly direct in style and acute in sensibility. Sometimes the frantic pace seems to be alluding to the gritty determination to get going and the frustration felt by limitations, whereas at other the step back suggests weariness and fear.
In a rare articulate press release, Crutchfield explains that ‘My life has changed a lot in the last two years, and it’s been hard for me to process my feelings other than by writing songs. A running theme is steadying yourself on shaky ground and reminding yourself that you have control in situations that seem overwhelming … or just being cognizant in moments of deep confusion or sadness, and learning to really feel emotions and to grow from that.’
Ivy Tripp sparkles with force and exploration. Crutchfield is growing up well.
Released 6th April 2015 on Wichita Recordings in the UK.